The Largely Unknown Health Epidemic Affecting Almost ALL Americans
Research from Rice University shows that 70 percent of all people are affected by Candida, a systemic fungal infection.1 According to the molecular biologists at Rice University, Candida is common in humans and is often found in colonies in their intestines, mouths, or on their skin. When researchers delved deeper into how Candida albicans moved throughout the body, with findings published in the journal PLOS One, they noted that the “remarkable pathogen” Candida can cause infection in the body that is both superficial and systemic by penetrating epithelial barriers.2
A Harvard University fellow in infectious disease, Julia Koehler, found that Candida is the predominant fungal infection behind human disease. According to Koehler, Candida was responsible for 60 percent of the fungal infections acquired in hospitals, killing one in three people with a bloodstream infection. Comparing Candida’s shape-shifting ability to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Koehler considered the fungus particularly dangerous because of its ability to change forms. When immunity is low, Candida can take over, and a systemic infection can quickly become lethal.3
Based on research published in the Journal of the German Society of Dermatology, Candida albicans overgrowth may be responsible for 50 to 90 percent of Candida infection and could be at the root of some chronic disease.4
WHAT IS CANDIDA?
A fungus is a microscopic organism that typically lives harmlessly in people. However, if your inner ecosystem is out of balance and your immunity is weakened, you are at risk for a fungal infection, like Candida (also known as a yeast infection).
A single-cell organism, Candida reproduces asexually and thrives on some of the body’s byproducts: dead tissue and sugars from food. Unless its environment is altered and its source of food is eliminated, it quickly monopolizes entire body systems, such as the digestive tract, and causes moderate to severe symptoms.
In patients with weakened immune systems, like those with AIDS or cancer, Candida in the bloodstream can (and often does) become the actual cause of death. Dr. Andrew Koh, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Microbiology at the UT Southwest Medical Center, estimates that for a cancer patient with a Candida infection in the bloodstream, the fatality rate is roughly 30 percent.5
SYMPTOMS OF CANDIDA
Please note these common Candida symptoms are also associated with many other disorders — making diagnosing this problem even more difficult:
•Bloating, belching, intestinal gas, and/or abdominal pain
•Constipation or diarrhea
•Endometriosis or infertility
•Fatigue and chronic fatigue
•Frequent mood swings
•Loss of sexual desire or feeling
•Muscle aches, weakness, or paralysis
•Pain and/or swelling in joints
•Poor memory, foggy thinking, or feeling “spacey”
•Troublesome vaginal itching, burning, or discharge
WHY FUNGAL INFECTIONS ARE BECOMING MORE COMMON
Why are so many people affected by fungal infections like Candida?
Some of the more common causes are listed below. Please note that all of these factors are related to weakened immunity, weakened adrenals, and low levels of minerals needed to maintain a slightly alkaline blood environment:
1 Gut diversity has changed – With less diversity in our gut microbiome, our bodies are more susceptible to pathogens that weaken the immune system.
2 Widespread use of antibiotics and other drugs – Drugs create an acidic environment in our blood, which weakens our immunity.
3 Success in treating diseases like AIDS/HIV – Creating a subgroup of people susceptible to fungal infections due to lowered immunity.
4 Poor food quality – Because of modern agricultural practices that deplete the soil of minerals, even the healthiest foods are not what they used to be. Eating these mineral-poor foods, and especially GMOs, creates an acidic blood environment.
5 Poor diets – The Standard American Diet is not only full of sugar and processed foods, it also lacks minerals. This sets the stage for an unhealthy inner ecosystem and lowered immunity.
If you have a strong immune system, you could still unknowingly have a fungal/yeast infection. It most likely is low-grade and chronic. You might notice that your fungal infection seems to at times “flare up,” even becoming “acute” any time your immune system is suppressed for any reason: stress, upset, pregnancy, or illness.
It’s clear that keeping our immunity strong is imperative, and this is one of the main benefits of Body Ecology’s program.
YEAST INFECTIONS: MORE SERIOUS THAN YOU THINK
A woman who has vaginal yeast infections is led to believe (from popular television commercials) that the problem is only in her birth canal or is an unsightly infection on her toenails. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, roughly 75 percent of women will get a vaginal yeast infection in their lifetime.6 But in fact, these are merely “symptoms” of an infection that is actually in her bloodstream. If she should become pregnant, her unborn baby is also at risk.
Some women who never have vaginal infections believe they are free of the problem when indeed they will have differing symptoms manifesting in other ways.
Fungal infections are very common in children with autism and also their mothers. We know autism begins in the womb when the fetus is exposed to the fungus.
Fungal infections like Candida can affect anyone at any age — pre-birth to elderly. Many of us were actually infected at birth. This sets the stage for an entire lifetime of weakened immune systems and poor health. With the widespread overuse of antibiotics and other drugs coupled with a processed, high-carb diet, fungal/yeast infections are currently affecting the well-being of at least four generations living today.
1 “Biologists ID Defense Mechanism of Leading Fungal Pathogen.” EurekAlert!
2Wächtler B, Citiulo F, Jablonowski N, Förster S, Dalle F, Schaller M, et al. (2012) Candida albicans-Epithelial Interactions: Dissecting the Roles of Active Penetration, Induced Endocytosis and Host Factors on the Infection Process. PLoS ONE 7(5): e36952. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0036952
3Cromie, William. “Genetic Secrets of Killer Fungus Found.” The Harvard University Gazette.
4J Dtsch Dermatol Ges. 2013 May;11(5):381-93; quiz 394. doi: 10.1111/ddg.12097.
5Di Fan, Laura A Coughlin, Megan M Neubauer, Jiwoong Kim, Min Soo Kim, Xiaowei Zhan, Tiffany R Simms-Waldrip, Yang Xie, Lora V Hooper, Andrew Y Koh. Activation of HIF-1α and LL-37 by commensal bacteria inhibits Candida albicans colonization. Nature Medicine, 2015; DOI: 10.1038/nm.3871
6″Candidiasis.” University of Maryland Medical Center.